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State faces critical conditions ideal for wildfire

State faces critical conditions ideal for wildfire

By Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

As the spring fire season deepens and expands, the Department of Natural Resources reports 81 of the state’s 87 counties are experiencing critical weather conditions ideal for wildfire, including strong winds and low humidity.

As warm and dry weather spreads, the following counties were added April 5 to the burn restriction list: Becker, Clay, Douglas, Grant, Hubbard, Norman, Otter Tail, Pope, Stevens, Traverse, Wadena and Wilkin. On March 31, the DNR will also restricted open burning in 14 counties: Anoka, Benton, Chisago, Hennepin, Isanti, Kanabec, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Ramsey, Sherburne, Stearns, Todd, Washington and Wright.

The state will not issue burning permits for brush or yard waste in these counties until the restrictions are lifted.

Restrictions remain in place for Anoka, Becker, Beltrami, Benton, Cass, Chisago, Clay, Clearwater, Douglas, Grant, Hennepin, Hubbard, Isanti, Itasca, Kanabec, Kittson, Koochiching, Lake of the Woods, Mahnomen, Marshall, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Norman, Otter Tail, Pennington, Polk, Pope, Ramsey, Red Lake, Roseau, Sherburne, Stearns, Stevens, Todd, Traverse, Wadena, Washington, Wilkin and Wright counties.

“Warm and dry conditions are key factors for wildfires, so we have to remain on alert about restricting open burning,” said Casey McCoy, DNR fire prevention supervisor. “These restrictions really do work. They’ve helped reduce wildfires by more than 30% over the past decade.”

McCoy encourages landowners to compost, chip, or take brush to a collection site rather than burn it. For information on how compost yard waste, visit the DNR’s guide to composting yard debris.

People who burn debris will be held financially responsible if their fire escapes and burns other property.

More information and daily updates on current fire risk and open burning restrictions is available on the DNR website.

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Copyright 2020 by Buckmasters, Ltd